Traverse City Record-Eagle

December 26, 2012

Wade L. Neal


INDIANAPOLIS — After a lifetime filled with love, family and friends, Wade LaRue Neal was taken home on Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012. He was born in Indianapolis to George and Bel LaRue Neal on April 10, 1921.

To say that Wade had a great love for people is an understatement. He was a friend to everyone, opening his home and his heart to people throughout his life. Wherever he went, whether to a Purdue or Colts football game, a sailing trip on the Great Lakes, or a simple trip to the grocery, Wade left an impression on those whose lives he touched. His unconditional love for his family was extraordinary and his zest for life was contagious.

Wade grew up in Detroit and graduated from Central High School in 1939. After high school, he attended Purdue University and graduated with a bachelor's degree in public service engineering in 1942. Wade served in World War II from 1944-1946 in the U.S. Navy. He enlisted in Detroit and was stationed at Brooklyn and Portsmouth Naval Yards. He was on Commodore's Staff in Okinawa and served as senior assistant maintenance officer in Long Beach, Calif. He left active duty with the rank of lieutenant.

On Oct. 7, 1950, Wade married his "partner in crime" for nearly 60 years, Janet Mary Stephenson. She preceded him in death and is most surely enjoying that long awaited dance with him in heaven. Wade and Janet had four children and enjoyed many summers sailing the Great Lakes on their boat, the Janalin, and enjoying their friends at their cabin in Eveline Orchards in East Jordan.

In his professional career, Wade was a sales engineer for J.T. Couchman Co. from 1946-1954, a partner at Walter F. Greene & Associates from 1954-1959, and President of Neal Engineering Company from 1959 until his retirement in 1984. Wade was a member of American Legion, Columbia Club, Contemporary Club, Delta Tau Delta, Service Club of Indianapolis, Downtown Kiwanis, John Purdue Club & Purdue Alumni, Hoosier Power Squadron, Indianapolis Sailing Club, and Great Lakes Cruising Club. Wade was a board member of Purdue Delta Tau Delta Association, Methodist Hospital of Indiana, Methodist Health Foundation, Washington Township School Board, Meridian Street United Methodist Church, Noble Industries, and Murat Shrine. He was a 50-year member of Millersville Masonic Lodge, Scottish Rite and Murat Shrine. Among his many awards, Wade received the Delta Tau Delta Distinguished Service Award and the Gamma Lambda Alumni Achievement Award for civic and professional contributions.

Wade was preceded in death by his parents, George and Bel; and his much loved wife, Janet.

He is survived by his children, Susan Neal, Linda (Bob) Cichocky, George (Susie) Neal, and Steve (Meagan) Neal; brothers-in-law, Steve (Linda) Stephenson, and Henry Gass; grandchildren Mary (Josh) Adamson, Ann Cichocky, Tyler, Stephanie, Jordan, Rachel, Cullen and Owen Neal; and great-grandchild, Caleb Adamson. Wade also leaves behind many nieces and nephews who were dearly loved by him.

Funeral arrangements for Wade include visitation at Flanner and Buchanan-Broad Ripple today, Dec. 26, from 4 to 8 p.m. Visitation at Meridian Street United Methodist Church on Thursday, Dec. 27, is at 10 a.m., with the funeral service beginning at 11 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, please direct any contributions to Meridian St. United Methodist Church or East Jordan United Methodist Church.

You are invited to visit the website: to share a personal memory of Wade or to sign the guest book.